Wisconsin Natural Resources Board restores original antlerless quotas in four of 11 counties
Madison — The Natural Resources Board (NRB) met in a special meeting the morning of July 30 and amended its actions from June 24 that reduced antlerless deer quotas in 11 northern counties.
The board approved a motion by Bill Smith to restore the original antlerless quotas recommended by the DNR and CDACs in Burnett, Douglas, Bayfield, and Sawyer counties.
This means that the original antlerless quotas for the 2020 deer season will be: 9,600 in Burnett County; 1,400 in Douglas County; 6,075 in Bayfield County; and 6,500 in Sawyer County.
The board stood firm on its changes for the remaining seven counties. Those estimated antlerless quotas now include:
• Vilas County: A 50% reduction in the quota with a 60/40 split of tags (from 550 tags to about 300).
• Florence County: A 50% reduction in public land tags to 150.
• Marinette County: A zero quota for the forest zone portion of the county.
• Oconto County: A zero quota for the forest zone portion of the county.
• Langlade County: A 50% reduction in public land tags (from 2,000 to 1,000).
• Oneida County: A 50% reduction in public land tags to 500.
• Lincoln County: A 50% reduction in public land tags to 750.
Ten citizens provided three-minute comments to the board, with eight asking the board to reconsider the reductions it made and restore the original recommendations of CDACs in all 11 counties. Many said the NRB June 24 actions were not transparent and undermined missions of CDACs.
The board stressed the importance of listening to the public and the need to improve the process so that the board receives recommendations from the DNR and CDACs with enough time to discuss with the public.
In the end the vote was six board members in favor of amending their actions from June 24 and one (Greg Kazmierski) against.
Dr. Frederick Prehn, NRB chair, said that although there will always be people who are unhappy with deer quotas, the board wants to do what is best for the state and the public needs to realize the importance of their local CDAC in establishing deer quotas.